As bird feeding starts to reach its peak its time to consider some steps to ensure safe feeding..

 - Keep feeders clean and replace seeds anytime it becomes caked or mold/mildew is spotted.  Many tube feeder designs now have removable tops and bottom for easy cleaning.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

 - Rake seed hulls under feeders or use a screen under the feeder to capture the hulls and dropped seeds.  Seeds can also be purchased without the hulls, which greatly reduces this problem.

 - Window strikes kill millions of birds each year.  Locate feeders over 20 ft. or less then 3 ft. from windows. There are also several commercial products - such as decals of spider webs  - that make the windows visible to the birds.   (Some organizations say 10 feet is far enough away, while others say 30 feet is required.)